tv America Live FOX News December 26, 2012 10:00am-12:00pm PST
hears about the story so he can give that ring back. kelly: thanks for joining us. livamerica live is coming up. >> reporter: a fox news alert on a deadly storm taking direct aim at some of the most populated cities. this monster already blamed for six deaths after dumping snow and sleet in the midwest. spawning dozens of tornadoes in the deep south, one touching down in mobile, alabama sparking explosions. there you saw it as it tracked across the city. in texas a suspected twister destroying several homes and businesses, fortunately nobody seriousl certificate injured seriously. hello i'm gregg jarrett. >> reporter: terrified americans
took cover stunned by what they were seeing. i'm heather childress. >> oh, my god, that is a tornado. oh, wow, oh, jesus look at that tornado. look at them, that's like two tornadoes, it's two funnels on the ground. oh, lord. look at there. wow. look at that. dear jesus please keep your hands-on my sister and her family. >> reporter: scary stuff but she kept shooting that video on a cellphone, that was in downtown mobile alabama. the danger is not over yet. right now tornado watches are in effect for eastern, north and south carolina while heavy no and blizzard conditions will impact the ohio valley and northeast. we will have more on that in a live update from maria molina in the fox weather center in a moment.
first we go to elizabeth pran live in atlanta with more on the storms wreaking havoc. >> reporter: we saw about 34 reported twisters spawn after the storm hit the southeast. originated really in texas where people reported pretty heavy wind gusts there. thousands of folks having a very dark christmas eve as crews scrambled to restore power. they stretched through parts of alabama, louisiana, mississippi and northwest florida. roofs were blown off homes in mobile, the biggest city to be hit by numerous rare winter twisters as well as powerful straight-line winds. forecasters say there could have been as many as 19 reported tornadoes that ripped through the area. many are still shocked at the damage. >> it was a lot worse than i ever thought it would ever be. but it's amazing how this community, as we have pulled together and they have helped me pick up the pieces, and
cleanup. >> reporter: trees and power lines remain on the ground this morning leaving debris on the roadway, so the sphoerp the stormy conditions continue. they ask that drivers postpone travel plans as they wait for visibility to improve. the day after christmas is one of the busiest travel days of the year at airports across the country, reportedly hundreds of flights delayed or canceled. atlanta airport are getting large gust winds leaving travelers on the tarmac. dallas and chicago and along the northeast the same. post christmas travelers need to be very patient and stay informed to see if their flights are canceled. >> reporter: thank you, elizabeth. >> reporter: tens of thousands of folks had to celebrate christmas in the dark. look at this. reports show a snowy arkansas was among the hardest hit. more than 189,000 customers without any electricity.
i'm not seeing snow there, but whatever. in alabama 31,000 people left in the dark. the majority of the people in mobile. the height of the storm. about 69,000 homes without power in the houston, texas area. nearby louisiana about 4,000 folks without any power late last night. look at that damage. wow. >> reporter: lots of damage. monster winds storms on the move making a mess for holiday travelers. we start in arkansas where freezing rain mixed with snow, here is some snow, sending cars slipping and sliding with deadly results, actually. at laos tw least two people killed on the slick roadways there. we are told the total number of deaths from this storm has risen to six. oklahoma also the scene of deadly weather-related accidents and roadways there covered in snow. and now to indiana, that's where the wind, combined with heavy snow bringing mere white outside conditions and treacherous travel. and now parts of the northeast could see up to a foot of snow.
maria molina is live in the fox weather center, no doubt extremely busy today. maria. >> reporter: unfortunately we have the storm system impacting so many people during christmastime. we are not really thinking about severe weather, tornadoes or even just incredible amounts of snowfall with blizzard conditions and that wind. we are typically trying to celebrate the holidays. in fact that storm system has been impacting many across portions of the midwest, across the south deadly tornadoes and that storm system will impact the northeast, impacting the state of pennsylvania with dangerous traveling conditions. i want to cover two things. well to the west of the storm it is very cold. temperatures right now in the single tkeupblg eudz digits. rapid city 5 degrees. 14 in minneapolis, in the 20s over in the city in dallas, texas. it's officially winter. this isn't really too unusual.
another thing to know is once we are done dealing with this storm system as we head into the weekend the east coast will have to deal with yet again another storm system that will produce more snow across parts eve of the north west. as we head into the weekend yet another storm system. let's deal with this one now. we have a tornado watch in effect across eastern portions of north carolina, also eastern parts of the state of south carolina, basically stating that conditions are favorable for more tornadoes to possibly touchdown across this area. we've had a number of tornado warnings. right now none are in effect which is good news, but nonetheless you still have this threat, this watch does go into effect until 5:00 eastern time. on the cold side of the storm system where we have heavy snow falling is across indiana, ohio, a blizzard warning currently effect. travel delays already being recorded across portions of the northwest. in laguardia delays of over and
hour, 160-minute delays averaging in the city of philadelphia, and philly international airport. the rain moving on in. in new york city not expecting to see too much snowfall, maybe a coating, an inch or two into the afternoon hours and the evening. inland, the taoeupb yore portions of the northeast easily over a foot of snow. some place expect thing 18 inches. severe weather risk across parts of the indianas and the char line as. >> reporter: i just made it through laguardia last notice and that weather forecast is exactly why i came back. thank you. >> reporter: the united states is less than a week away from going over the so-called fiscal cliff. they say if president obama and congress don't make a deal we will almost certainly see a recession. do you buy that, steven? >> the congressional budget
office is a nonpartisan group that does this and says we will in fact have an immediate rescission. they say that we come out of a short, sharp recession stronger than we would be if we didn't go into that recession in the first place. we stop borrowing money from the future to prop us up now. we have the immediate problems but in the long term we are in gets shape. that's what they are grappling this. how do they best structure this to do the least amount of damage now but get us to the good economy in the future. >> reporter: if you look up a research paper from the president's own economist you'll find in the long run we are healthier, short run, yeah, it's painful. is that what motivates some of the republicans that, you know, what are called chuckle heads, but maybe in the end they are wisdom heads. >> that is certainly part of the motivation there. the other part of the motivation, and the republicans were talking about it, the ones
who are quietly saying that they think it's better to go over the fiscal cliff rather than go ahead and delay the tax increases and more importantly the spending cuts. the other thing you get out of that is if you allow the tax increases to go into effect a lot of those republicans think they have a better shot at tax reform next year when you instantly have a broader tax base. the numbers are sort of come complex. when the bush tax cuts went into effect fewer people had an income tax liability. this is what mitt romney was talking about last year with the 47%. if the tax rates increase you all of a sudden have more people paying income taxes and you just have a broader, higher rate to play with. next year when they come back they can get rid of some of the duck -ts and what not and lower the rates and overall have a lot more money in the system to play with, a lot more options. they think they are better shape for tax reform if they come back next year with the rates having gone up. >> reporter: and by not allowing the president to just add nah
see um raise the debt level, they have leverage, don't they? >> they believe so. and the president -- it's safe to say the president realizes that, because he's been insistent throughout that he won't deal with another debt level gamesmanship as he calls it from the last time around. he understands that republicans set a precedent last time when they said every one of these debt level increases has to be matched with real action, spending cuts and other ways to reduce the deficit, that is exactly the fight we are fashion. he doesn't want to have that. republicans are dying to get into that. >> reporter: do you think the president for political reasons wants to go over the cliff? barrasso said so. look, there are a bunch of others who think so. >> there are certainly some on the left who also, just like conservatives, there are some on the left that do. i don't think the president does. part of the reason, just like i don't believe john boehner actually does the house speaker. there is this group in the middle, first of all they are not sure where the political blame would lie.
it could end up on them and they want want to have that happen. second of all these are deal mayors. they came to washington to get deals done. and they see the result, the goal as a deal to get past this rather than looking at the numbers. the folks on each side eve are looking at the numbers and they say the deficit would be in better shape and the economy in the long run is in better shape. they are looking long term. the deal makers in the center are looking right now and say they are scared of the political consequences and we are not quite sure how the numbers end up, the last thing we need is a rescission. >> reporter: steve vin dinin in washington. thank you. >> reporter: new information on a horrified christmas eve tragedy as a note left by this ex-con suggests that he planned to kill first responders and possibly some of his own neighbors when he set this massive inferno, it happened on monday, after that before shooting two firefighters who arrived at the scene to help.
trace gallagher live from our west coast newsroom with more on this disturbing story. trace. >> reporter: police say that note from 62-year-old william spengler was three pages, five written, and it did not offer a motive as to why he pulled off the ambush, but it did layout in very evil and lee clear terms exactly what his intent was. it reads in part quoting here, i still have to get ready to see how much of the neighborhood i can burn down and do what i like doing best, killing people. police say he was equipped to go to worst with a multi-million tear re-style rifle, a revolver, a shotgun. they found a large number of rounds inside the house. police say he set his house on fire to lure those first responders into a lethal trap. he shot four killing two, wounding two. he also shot an off-duty police officer before turning the gun on himself. listen. >> the motive is always the
burning question and i'm not sure we'll ever really know what was going through his mind. >> reporter: the motive may have been brewing for some 20 to 30 years. in 1981 police arrested him for bludgeoning list 92-year-old grandmother to death. he served 17 years in prison. in recent years he lived with his moment and sister. his mom passed away in october. neighbors say that might have set him off. his sister's remains were found inside the house. six other homes as you see there burned down, 33 people, heather, lived inside those six other homes. >> reporter: just awful, trace, thank you. as we learn more about the gunman's criminal past we will speak with a clinical psychologist about how an obviously dangerous individual slipped through the cracks of the system. >> reporter: and growing controversy in the fight over the second amendment as a newspaper publishes the names and addresses of every pistol-holder in the area. we are talking about westchester, new york. [ sniffs ] i have a cold.
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gregg: if you thought you missed 'chance there is still plenty of time to book tickets to the next inaugural. presidentialee nicaragua rafplt don't you want to go? d.c. area who he sells say a lot of rooms are still available 800,000 people expected to attend. 1.8million showed up four years ago. only three inaugural balls this time around instead of tefpblt i'm disappointen. i'm disappointed. they say second-round inaugurals are lesser. heather: serious civil war with one of the highest defections to date as the general of the the military police announces he's
switching sides and joining the opposition. this as the nearly two-waoerl -year-old uprising against bashar al-assad shows no signs of slowing down. the bloody uprising blamed for tens of thousands of deaths. ralph peters is a fox news strategic analyst and joins us with more incite on this. how significant is this defection. >> it is significance. it's not by itself going to topple the regime. it's a real propaganda victory for the rebels. it tells us all that the last rats are deserting the sinking ship. he'll have very important information. in the syrian military the role of the military police is different than ours. the military police in syria, among other things they are the enforcers, behind the other shoulders making sure the other enforcers don't dessert, kill the people they are told to kill. this guy, this general is a real
bad hombre, a real insider. bottom line, won't end things by itself but help the shirt does matter. heather: this all began roughly about 21 months ago with people protesting, asking for reforms. it turned into a civil war, estimates put about 40,000 people dead. are we any closer to the civil war being resolved? >> well, we are closer to bashar al-assad being gone, but because the rest of the world has refused to get its hands dirty there is a good chance that the civil war against bashar al-assad is going to turn into another civil war between more secular elements and the jihadis, the great mistake the obama administration made hapb it's a tragic mistake, we will pay for it for decades to come is that by not helping the original freedom fighters who were a secular western oriented
by and large we opened the door for this flood of jihadis and terrorists coming into fight bashar al-assad, and they don't want democracy and freedom, they are determined to establish an islamist state. he will go one way or the other but that will not resolve the problems or the region's. with respect to the general, heather h the real development that slipped under the radar over christmas was moscow changing its tone. it's been a real supporter of bashar al-assad and the u.n., suddenly moscow seems to be seeing sad requires on the way out, they can't say him. they say it's okay to give him asylum. russia will not give him asylum and it seems to me that the russians are sending signals now to the opposition that, let's talk. because what the russians wanted in there they wanted to keep our number one arab ally, bashar al-assad. he's going, now they want to keep their naval case. there are so many layers and
rival factions, national and international that syria will be a problem for years to come. heather: russia also saying their policies will no longer be tied tow a specific family or name, that being key as well. >> right. heather: i want to ask you in these final moments what is going on in egypt right now and how that is affect being the rest of the middle east. >> it's affecting the rest of the middle east because it gives even more momentum to the islamist tide. in this referendum which was a put up job the muslim brotherhood won. they claimed 64%, although only 30% of egyptians voted in the referendum on the constitution. the bottom line is, once islamists get power they do not want to give it up. and it's interesting to me as an american to see how the muslim brotherhood won and why. they won because they don't necessarily have a national majority, but they are the best organized. they've got all the islamist acorn-type organizations that
can turn out the base and fridge members of society, so they are really using a western tool of elections, western election nearing tech niece to establish a disteupblg distinctly western society. the obama administration is going to go down in history having viewed up more of the middle east and any president and administration of our past. gregg: a new controversy after the russian parliament votes to ban americans from adopting russian or fans, wha rophans. what is behind this idea and why russian critics say it victim myselfess kids. >> a newspaper gets its hands-on the names and addresses of gun permit holders and then push hreurbs the information online.
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on new year's eve. our very own megyn kelly and bill hemmer will bring you the billing even big event from times scare in new york city. you can text your happy new year's message to gregg and all the west of us. gregg: i'll make sure it gets there. heather: type letter u text, that is all one world. type a brief message and send it to 36288. u text space your message to 36288 and watch your message here on new year's eve. gregg: new controversy in the ongoing debate over u.s. gun rights after a local newspaper decides to public the names and addresses of pistol-permit holders in the area without checking whether there is even a gun in those homes, including mine. david lee miller live in our new
york city newsroom. david. >> reporter: all readers have to do is click on a colored dot and you can see who has a permit for a handgun. the headline is the gun owner next door what you don't know about guns in your neighborhood. thousands of people reacted in rage saying their privacy was vie hraetd and personal safety was put at risk. the newspaper says it legally obtained the information after making a freedom of information list just outside new york city. it is waitinger the data from put number county although the map reveals the names and addresses of people who have permits it does not disclose whether or not they have a gun. the paper said specific information about the gun and the type of gun although requested was not released by authorities. a statement by the newspaper explained its reason for purchase hreurbing the information. quote the massacre in newtown
remains at the top for many of the readers. our website as hapb keenly focused on gun control. this is not the first time the paper has published information about gun permits. it did so back in 2006. said reaction this time was much greater due do the popularity of social media. the paper is owned by ganette it has been struggling economically. it eliminated last year 12 oeupb 5% of its staff. they say resources were being preserve used to proceed serve relevant contact. they are posting online personal information of the executives of the newspaper. the paper said he owns a smith and west on 357 magnum. gregg: i'm going to be interested to see if my name is on the list since i live there. folks there think that the newspaper is run by idiots and morons, and this may have proved them correct i don't know. we'll see. david lee miller, thanks very much.
heather: well, there is that. gregg: yes, there is that. you know what they are trying to do, they are trying to sigma ty people and it's very mean spirit towed do it especially right now. heather: we'll see what the fallout continues to be. new developments in the effort to avert the fiscal cliff. coming up the policy democrats are now floating as a possible solution that they fiercely opposed during the bush administration. gregg: and the latest on a nasty winter storm over the midwest that's now on a collision course with the east coast. >> there is a small town maybe ten miles from here, love lady, and it blew the roof off of a bank into another house, that is a couple of structures. as far as i know there was a guy, he had a house maybe a mile from here and it totally took it down. [ all ] 3, 2, 1...
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and high levels of carbon monoxide. it could help you save something more important than money. call now to save $300 on adt starting at $99 installed plus 15% off accessories. sale ends midnight january 2nd. >> well, a fox news extreme weather alert for you on a killer storm now responsible for six deaths. the powerful system that dumped maas i have amounts of snow on the central and spawned dozens of christmas day tornadoes is now taking direct aim at the east coast bringing with it the threat of more twisters and blizzard conditions. let's get right to it with maria molina live in the fox weather center with more. >> reporter: that's right. we're still tracking this storm system that has already produced blizzard conditions across areas, in the midwest and also the deep south and now the northeast starting to feel the impacts from this storm system.
we're seeing that snow already accumulating across portions of pennsylvania, parts of the higher elevations of the state of west virginia dealing with a wintry mix out there accumulating as well, so you could be seeing some icing on the roadways, very dangerous stuff if you're trying to do traveling today. and the airports, of course, also already reporting delays, well over an hour across places in the northeast including right here in new york city in the laguardia airport and, of course, another big concern with this system is that south of it where temperatures are too warm to see snow, we're still seeing that severe weather risk with tornadoes possible from some of these thunderstorms across eastern portions of north carolina and south carolina. there are currently tornado watches until 5 p.m. eastern time, so, please, keep that in mind. you've got to seek shelter immediately, and on the northern side of the snow system blizzard conditions ongoing across the state of indiana and also northern parts of the state of ohio. cleveland really getting in on some of that heavy snow right
now, and accumulations could be anywhere between 6-12 inches of snow, higher amounts possible especially as we head into interior portions of the northeast. as we head into this evening, the nighttime hours and early thursday morning, so we do have a prolonged period of time here that we will be dealing with the winter weather. winter storm warnings are in effect from parts of west virginia and also western portions of the state of west virginia, in pennsylvania, upstate new york and also portions of maine. so easily over a foot of snow forecast, especially on some of the higher elevations across the northeast. and here's one of our computer models as far as snow. as far as additional snow in parts of ohio, easily over 6 inches out here, and some of that purple shading is actually over two feet of snow, and that's basically to the east of the city of buffalo. so, again, incredible amounts of snowfall forecast out here. coastal cities, new york city, you're not really expecting to see too much snow from this system, but as we head into the afternoon hours, you could see a
little bit of sleet mixing in with that rainfall. but, again, the worst of it staying into interior sections of the northeast. heather: thank you, mark ya. gregg: looking nasty, isn't it? heather: lots of snow out there. gregg: and there's a lot of nastiness going on in the washington too. a growing debate on a major sticking point in the effort to keep the u.s. economy from going over the fiscal cliff as a group of democrats push for the extension of most of the bush-era tax cuts, cuts they say staunchly -- they opposed years ago. joining us now to talk about it, tony -- [inaudible] a republican political analyst and consultant and a national political correspondent for talk radio news service. michael is a democratic strategist, and he joins us as well. good to see you both. tony, look, the word we're getting is that harry reid is going to pass an extension of the bush tax cuts for anybody under 250,000, extend
unemployment benefits for two million folks. um, now, if that happens, it goes to the house, and the house will probably have to put it up. aren't republicans, your party, going to wish that they had passed plan b? >> absolutely, gregg. look, plan b really should have been our plan a, number one. number two, plan b was really the idea of chuck schumer and nancy pelosi as recently as in this summer. to set the threshold on incomes to a million dollars versus 250,000, allow those tax rates for a million and above go up, the president talked about taxing millionaires and billionaires, that would be right, and now let the rest of the country enjoy the extension of the full bush tax cuts which i think we now even see democrats acknowledging have meaningful -- gregg: basil, if it doesn't work, the president's going to have egg on his face, right? >> no, not at all. gregg: come on.
>> the president has come back with a compromise. the people that have egg on their face are republicans. they've taken intractable positions where as the president has made concessions, boehner cannot show leadership to get anything passed through his congress right now. and, quite frankly, they're being sort of held by the tea party against some extraordinary positions that they have to take at a time when the paradigm has shifted. so i think the country is recognizing that the country -- gregg: looking at the larger picture, if we go into a double-dip recession, this president won't get anything that he wants on anything, and he he could go down in history as an awful president, right? >> a two of of term president who trounced the republicans in the november? absolutely not. he doesn't go down as an awful -- gregg: he didn't really trounce them in november. i mean, he actually pairly won. >> are barely? we'll go back to numbers, but that's another story. i think -- >> bush had two terms, too,
basil, i don't think you probably think he was such a great president. [laughter] >> you're right, i don't. but the reality is i don't think he has egg on his face, he will not be screwed as a fail -- view ed as a failure. most people are willing to deal with spending cuts and tax increases -- gregg: but, tony, there are 23 million americans still unemployed and underemployed. >> absolutely. and they're not going to, basically, get employment and income with government assistance and subsidies alone. you have to grow the economy, and nothing this president's done in four years has meaningfully done that. let's go back to the point that says the republicans are intractable. they agreed to $1.2 trillion in new revenue. john boehner from the very beginning put 800 billion in revenue on the table. the president was known to say, well, that's mine. i get that one for free. i don't have to give anything in return. the president in addressing a deficit added $1.6 trillion in new spending. gregg: yeah. >> so who are we joking right
now? the president has never taken the spending side of this equation seriously, which is why we don't have a deal. republicans have put their necks on the line supporting new revenues, the president's not coming through. gregg: senator barrasso said the president does want to go over the cliff, because he wants to punish republicans. is there something to that? >> i don't think there's anything to that, but the reality is that if he wants to get anything done, he has two options. he either breaks the republicans on taxes, or he breaks the republicans. i read that somewhere, and i thought it was a fantastic quote. but i do think that he is going -- i don't think any of us want to see the country go off the cliff. gregg: maybe he just didn't think $16 trillion in debt is a big deal, basil? >> i think he thinks it's a big deal if we go off this cliff. we're talking about two million folks that will not get unemployment anymore, i don't think anyone wants that, but i think that hurts republicans -- gregg: well, it's very interesting you bring that up
because none of the proposals on the table right now teal with the amt or payroll taxes and, tony, i mean, that's going to hurt every single american who pays taxes, and can they're going to blame the president. >> and even with a deal, gregg, you bring up an excellent point, taxes on dividends go up from 14% to 47%, capital gains go up even greater. let's remember bill clinton knew you had to cut capital gains taxes to stimulate capital formation and investment that grew the economy in the '90s, pretty robustly, i think democrats would agree. so there is a whole set of things that have to be done in order to keep this economy out of dipping back into a recession which is why we have missed the real conversation set very well by democrats and republicans on the bipartisan debt commission. for every one dollar in increased revenue, we need four dollars in spending cuts. the president has failed to meet that level. >> you had a bill on the floor of the house, and boehner failed to get that pushed through. what happened there? >> that was -- boehner's
leadership, without a doubt, i think, took a huge hit with that one, but that still represents one-tenth of the problem. where's the president's leadership on spending? >> that represents the entire problem. >> really? not according to the bipartisan debt commission. revenues represent the entire problem. >> this is the speaker of the house that can't do his job, that's what that represents, and he can't lead the rest of the republicans in actually -- >> john boehner has put forward two proposals. the president came back, and even the liberal financial times and ezra klein of "the washington post" -- >> washington times liberal? -- financial times liberal? >> well, they endorsed obama. they said it was the same budget he proposed in 2011 that got -- gregg: i'm out of time. basil, give me your prediction come next tuesday, will there be a deal or not? >> i think harry reid will do a stopgap deal, and we'll be back at the drawing board. gregg: tony 134. >> that's what's going to happen at best, and it's not going to solve the problem. we need the grand bargain, we
really do. gregg: good to see you both. >> good to be here. >> thanks so much, gregg. heather: coming up, a potentially major strike threatening the u.s. economy from coast to coast as business leaders ask where is president obama? with poor workers on the brink of a walkout that could cost billions. gregg: and we are learning more about the man who killed two firefighters, upstate new york. we're going to talk with a clinical psychologist about how a man like this could slip through the cracks, a man who claimed in his farewell note that killing people was what he liked to do. and an officer wiewbded in the shooting -- wound withed in the shooting speaking out just moments ago for first time. >> for some reason some person decides that he can do whatever he wants. no one ever expected that, i never expected that. these are things that no one ever expects in the world today. there's no way to defend an ambush. you know, i am full of many mixed emotions of, a, being here
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♪ gregg: hey, the world's biggest coffee chain is trying to brew up a compromise to avert this so-called fiscal cliff. starbucks asking employees at its washington, d.c.-area cafés to scribble the words "come together" on customers' coffee cups. yeah, like that's going to work. this isn't the first time the coffee chain has decided to send
a political message. [laughter] remember the summer of 2011? who could forget starbucks asking the country to stop making campaign contributions, that worked out really well. remember that debacle? it ultimately led to a downgrade of the country's credit rating. starbucks, you know, maybe you ought to just stick to making coffee. okay? [laughter] heather: to a fox news alert now, we are getting new reaction from one of the first responders who was injured by shrapnel when an ex-con in upstate new york intentionally set a massive fire on christmas eve and then started shooting when emergency responders showed up at the scene. listen. >> for some unknown reason, some person decides that he can do whatever he wants. no one ever expected that, i never expected that. tease are things that no one ever expects in the world today. there's no way to defend an
ambush, you know? i am full of many mixed emotions of, a, being here and others not being here. i can't, i can't answer questions when it comes to that, because i don't know why i'm still here other than there was some type ofdivine intervention that kept that round from penetrating through my car and hitting something else. so i don't, you know, the true story is about four heroes that were wounded or killed. you know? and for a fireman to lay under his truck almost mortally wounded and give directions, because i've listened to his account of what happened, is commendable. you know? that guy, under fire, is on his fire radio telling them this is where he is, this is what i see, this is what's going on. and then to have a webster officer actually on scene and for him to actually engage this
individual, which is my understanding that he did, and suppress him, you know, they stopped a lot more. heather: we're also getting new evidence in this case, and while an apart farewell note did confirm investigators' suspicions that this fire was really just a trap, we're learning that the two firefighters killed in this attack were not the only ones to pay with their lives. and after hearing that suspect william spengler outlined his clear intent to burn down his neighborhood and, quote: do what i like doing best, killing people. there's some serious questions as to whether the system may have failed in this repeat offender and how such an evidently dangerous individual just managed to slip through the cracks. joining me now, clinical psychologist and author dr. henry cloud. thank you for joining us, and how did this happen? >> thank you, heather. you know, it's so impossible to predict the one that's going to
do this that we know for sure that certain sat guys are more prone to it -- certain categories are more prone to it, so finding the one guy that's going to go out and do this becomes impossible. but what we can do and we need to do more of is have everybody who's at risk be more integrated. my question is, who was watching him? you know, who's responsible for the rehab process? he's out there, who's checking in with him, and especially now we know his mother died a couple of months ago. whenever you see a crisis like that emerge around an unstable person, that's when you get scared. heather: yeah. his mother died in october and, apparently, from some accounts, from some neighbors and people who knew him, he was very close to his mother. he was not very close to his sister. >> right. which is even more complicated because, you know, broadly speaking when you think of these really hardened criminals and sociopaths and the lack of empathy, you get this conflicting picture of he's close to his mother.
and it's just a very difficult one to unravel. i'm sure we'll find out more. my big point in this, though, is in all the categories the people who are severely mentally ill and psychotic, the hardened criminals as well as the vulnerable types who one day go shoot everybody, we've got to be watching all of 'em and doing the right things. you know, some can be worked with, some need to be contained, but somebody's not watching in a lot of these cases. heather: and this individual, you know, apparently he had been on parole following the death that he was found guilty of, killing his grandmother. as you mentioned, brutally with a hammer, but apparently that parole only lasted until 2006. so what do you suggest should be done in situations like this? you know, we believe now at this point that the human remains that were found inside his burned home were that of his 67-year-old sister as well. >> right. i think if you wed two concepts
together, whatever help we're trying to offer people that also becomes the method for prevention. you know, any kind of working with people or rehabilitating people on an ongoing basis, when you're having contact, it's in the contact that you see how much of it they're taking in and how much they're resisting, how much other violent behavior they're showing even in the helping relationship. and it's helping and preventing really become the same thing because that's where you get closer contact with people. and we need them more integrated into whoever's responsible for helping them and watching them. heather: well, dr. cloud, thank you so much for joining us, we appreciate your insight. and also we want to add this here, we just received notice from the hospital. the university of rochester medical center letting us know that today they expect that both firefighters who were still being treated will be upgraded to satisfactory condition, so good news on that front.
gregg? gregg: lawmakers in the russia are taking a very tough stand against americans trying to adopt russian children, unanimously approving a ban on it. it's not a done deal yet. who has the final say? we're live with that story. and giving back at christmas time and some big help came from, well, some very small volunteers. details next. anyone have occasional constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating? yeah. one phillips' colon health probiotic cap each day helps defend against these digestive issues with three strains of good bacteria. approved! [ female announcer ] live the regular life. phillips'. we don't let frequent heartburn come between us and what we love. so if you're one of them people who gets heartburn and then treats day afr day... block the acid with prilosec otc and don't get heartburn in the first place! [ male announcer ] e pill eachmorning. 24 hours. zero heartbur
gregg: welcome back. lawmakers in russia sparking outrage here after they unanimously approved a ban on adopting kids by u.s. citizens. trace gallagher is live in our west coast newsroom with more on this. hi, trace. >> reporter: you know, gregg, this is all in retaliation for a bill that president obama signed earlier this month labeling the russians as human rights violaters and calling for sanctions on the russians. now, this adoption clause is a very small part of a larger bill that was approved, as you said, unanimously by the russian parliament. the bill now goes to president putin to sign. if he signs it -- and he is expected to sign it -- no more russian children will be adopted by americans, including 46 children whose adoptions are already in progress. the national council for adoption calls this a tragedy for russian kids. listen. >> over 700,000 registered
orphans in russia right now. um, there were over a thousand adoptions to the united states many 2011 alone. this means potentially the loss at a hope and a future through a loving, permanent family for countless orphans in russia. >> reporter: yeah. and just to add to that, consider that since 1981 nearly 60,000 russian children have been adopted in the u.s., but the russians point to 19 russian kids who have died after being adopted saying the children were mistreated in this country. in fact, this new russian bill is actually named after a child who died after his american adoptive father put him in the back of a sweltering car. now the russian foreign minister, the education minister are against this new bill. it seems they may not have a lot of sway, though, because president putin is, in fact, expected to sign this thing relatively soon. gregg: all right. so much for pair troika and glass northeast. thanks very much, trace.
>> reporter: sure. heather: just days until taxes are set to up on almost every american, the president -- this is nice of him, to cut his vacation short, get back to work -- well, he is planning to keep that from happening. that's not the only thing on his plate. ed henry ahead with those details. gregg: and as some rare winter weather tears the roofs off homes down south, we're going to get an update on the devastation in the devastated areas in the south. it's amazing you got back. heather: i know. i got back to prove you wrong,. gregg. gregg: there you go. >> oh, my god, look, that's a tornado. oh, wow. oh, jesus, look at that tornado.
♪ [ male announcer ] everyone deserves the gift of all day pain relief. this season, discover aleve. all day pain relief with just two pills. heather: welcome back. a fox news alert, president obama heads back to washington, d.c. tonight cutting short his hawaiian vacation to try and work out an 11th hour deal to bring the country back from the edge of the fiscal cliff. and welcome to a brand new hour of "america live," i'm heather childers. gregg: and i'm gregg jarrett, megyn is off today. senate lawmakers also cutting short their holiday break. the real sticking point is in all of this has been the president's proposed tax hike. both sides suggesting a cooling-off period was necessary before getting back to business,
but the word from both democrats and republicans today, nothing has changed. chief white house correspondent ed henry is in beautiful honolulu. aloha, ed. [laughter] >> reporter: aloha. [laughter] well, it's interesting pause you say the sticking point -- because you say the sticking point is taxes going up, which is true, but the other big one will be spending cuts because the latest offer, we've been through plan a which was that $4 trillion debt deal, plan b which fell apart on speaker john boehner last week, now we're basically on plan c which president obama says would be dealing with short-term issues like two million people who are losingen employment benefits in a week, dealing with the tax issue as you say. he wants to go back to the threshold of 250,000 or more taxes go up, 250 or lower, taxes stay at the bush rates, the lower rates. but in a short-term deal like that, the president said last
friday that spending cuts would come later next year at some point, and republicans like speaker boehner are saying if taxes are going up on some, they don't want to just have more revenue coming into the government to spend it on other programs. now, before heading back tonight, as you noted, the president went through with a christmas tradition when he comes out here to hawaii for the holidays. he and the first lady went to visit some troops at a u.s. marine base here, and he had a very simple, direct message. take a listen. >> so we know that it's not easy, but what we also want you to know is that you have the entire country behind you, and all of us understand that we would be nowhere without the extraordinary service that you guys provide. >> reporter: now, after the red eye flight tonight the president will be landing in the washington area early thursday, likely meeting with congressional leaders at some point later this week into the weekend. interesting, after a long flight like that, he'll probably need
some coffee. starbucks revealing it's going to be having its employees to write "come together" on their coffee cups in their washington, d.c. shops trying to inspire folks in both parties to work out differences. we'll see whether or not this has any influence on both sides. gregg: i really didn't hear anything you said because i was looking agent -- at the beautiful diamondhead in the background. [laughter] tell our viewers what you do in between your live shots. i mean, do you go down and get in the water and stuff? [laughter] dodo you? >> reporter: i love rubbing it in because i'm not sure how cold it is back there for you and heather, but, you know, the weather's actually been somewhat lousy here, so it's only been, gosh, maybe 78 or 80 instead of 84 or 85, so i really am roughing it, but i'm going to be heading back very quickly in the next few hours after finishing up tonight with shep to get right back to work, right back to the cold weather, so i'm
going to savor every second -- gregg: well, you got in the water, right? i mean, you went in the water. >> reporter: oh, yeah. i've been in the water. as soon as we're done. gregg: do you have pictures? >> reporter: i'll tweet 'em out. you want me to tweet 'em? gregg: you promise you're going to tweet your pictures of you in the surf? >> reporter: yeah. i'm going to actually do a surf lesson later today. gregg: i'm going to hold you to that. >> reporter: after work, of course. gregg: all right. ed henry in the surf. stay for it, people, stay for it. okay. heather: well, a fox extreme weather alert for you now, new warnings for post-christmas travelers as a massive storm makes its way toward the east coast, part of a deadly system that ripped through the south and the midwest leaving at least six people dead. now, thises video, it's out of alabama, of what appears to be a tornado forming. several buildings including a church and a high school, they were severely damaged, several car wrecks also reported on the
roads. look at that dramatic footage there. and this, this is a scene -- the aftermath, anyway -- in mississippi. you can see serious damage on the ground there today as a state of emergency has been declared for eight counties there. at least a dozen homes completely destroyed, and listen to people describe the chaos. >> we've got a lot of damage, got people hurt, and i went out with a skid steer. we rounded up some equipment, started opening up the roads for the emergency vehicles and get the ambulances in. it's a mess. >> it was a definite tornado. we've had several people call in said they saw it, the damage is consistent, indicate i have of tornado damage. we've had homes that are 90% destroyed. that doesn't happen with straight line winds. heather: and according to the national weather service, at least three tornadoes were reported in texas. busy highways left looking like ghost towns. their piggest problem today,
downed power lines. so far the death toll has risen, as we told you, to at least six people. more than 100,000 homes in five states including alabama are living in the dark. and joining us now on the phone is a woman with alabama's emergency management. thank you so much for joining us and taking the time. >> thank you, heather, for having me. heather: bring us up-to-date, if you can, on what alabama -- your area -- is dealing with right now? >> well, as a result of the storms yesterday on december 25th, we have about 11 counties reporting damage into the alabama emergency management office. of those 11 we have three with pretty senate -- significant damage, of course, that would include mobile county as you guys referenced. heather: so mobile county's the hardest hit you've experienced so far? >> >> yes, that is correct. heather: now, what about injuries and deaths? >> so far we are very fortunate to report there are no fatalities from this storm. we have minor injuries.
we know there's one significant injury in pike county, but no significant injuries in mobile county. heather: you know, i know, um, it was april 2011, were you there in alabama when all of those tornadoes ripped through then? >> yes, i was. heather: what lessons were learned from that that allowed you to prepare or send out notices to people this time around? >> well, after that, the april storms in 2011 that really taught our residents here the need to take severe weather serious. you know, in alabama we have two severe weather seasons, one in the april and in the spring season and one during this time of year, november/december time frame. so people know as the weather is changing the possibility of severe weather is very high. so when we ask them to be prepared, to have a plan, they're really putting that into motion, and we saw that evident yesterday with a number of injuries being quite low. heather: so you also sent out notices and used social media as well, i understand. >> yes, we do. we use social media very much in
the state, and people really appreciate and respond to to it. we try to push anything we can via social media. heather: what about residents there tonight, tomorrow, do you have shelters up for them? >> yes, the american red cross, they're in mobile right now. they have a shelter in place, as i understand no one is occupying that shelter, but they will keep that open just to insure everybody has a safe and warm place to go for tonight. heather: uh-huh. and as we speak to you, we're looking at pictures destruction. a lot of downed trees, i would assume a lot of roadways are still impassable. what are you doing to let people know where they can go and what they should do? >> well, the locals are notifying their constituents of the roads that are open and closed, and i do know they've been working pretty much through the night last night and all day today to try to get those roads back open so residents can move throughout the city as they need to. heather: i'm from the south, so i know there are two areas of time -- as you mentioned, the spring and around this time --
when you can see storms like this. are you expecting any more, and what are you letting your residents, what are you telling them moving forward? >> well, right now we're experiencing quite cool temperatures, so we're not expecting any more storms, not for the next few days to come. but we're telling our residents to always be prepared. oftentimes we look at, you know, maybe a spring season or this winter season are the times for us to have severe weather, but we know it can happen any time. so always having a way to receive a weather alert insures that you and your family will be safe the next time something like what happened yesterday maybe occur again. heather: all right. thank you so much for joining us from alabama. we appreciate it. thank you. >> thank thank you. gregg: and while those twisters may be the headline of the day, the major winter storm is still, you know, a winter storm. snow in oklahoma is blamed for 21 cars piling up, and as that system moves further north, creating serious obstacles well beyond the state's borders. thousands of airline travelers
now facing a major post-holiday headache. 900 flights plus already canceled as of midday tonight. most of those cancellations at airports either hit by the store or its path. travelers are advised to check with their carriers later today. heather: the taliban now claiming responsibility for a homicide pomming at a u.s. military -- bombing at a u.s. military base in afghanistan near the pakistani border. police say the bomber's vehicle exploded while he was being questioned by a security guard. the blast killing the attacker and three civilians. leland vittert is live in jerusalem with the latest on this. leland? >> reporter: heather, the real significance here is the increase in the number of these attacks, especially what they call insider attacks meaning members of the afghan police or security service attacking members of nato or u.s. military people. so far there have been 60 of those this year, that's almost
three times the number last year. inside afghanistan 66,000 u.s. troops and thousands more of u.s. military contractors, that's who joseph griffin was. he was an adviser to the afghan police department. that is when a young woman, 30 years old, inside the afghan police force -- she was actually an iranian national who somehow with forged documents was able to get a job with the afghan police -- she shot mr. griffin in the head, and this really underscores the vetting process and how poor it is for the afghan police department in the sense that once the united states leaves in 2014, it is the afghans who are going to take over their own security. it is these same people who are committing these attacks against members of the united states' military and also u.s. contractors who will then be charged with fighting the taliban and also fighting al-qaeda inside offing -- of afghanistan. there's a lot of people, heather, who are very concerned about the ability of the
afghanistan military and their security services to be able to keep that country under control, to keep out the taliban and keep out al-qaeda considering how many sympathize sympathizers to those groups are currently inside the afghan security services and, clearly, already attacking members of the united states' military. heather? heather: it is a concern. leland vittert reporting live for us from jerusalem. thank you. gregg: youing concerns that our -- growing concerns that our struggling u.s. economy could get another delaware stating blow sometime -- devastating blow sometime soon not from the fiscal cliff, but from a union strike that could shut down major ports from coast to coast. should the white house step in? we're going to be talking smoot holly in a second. heather: former president george h.w. bush has been hospitalized for more than a month. what doctors are now saying about the former president's health. gregg: and from twilight twists to secret e-mails to the cia, a
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heather: welcome back. an update now on former president george h.w. bush who spent christmas in the hospital. a spokesman said that the fever that kept him from going home is now gone. that's good news. the 88-year-old former president has been hospitalized since end of november with bronchitis and a cough. doctors remain cautious hi optimistic about his recovery. no discharge date has yet been set. ♪ gregg: wish him well. a looming strike by thousands of dock workers could have a huge impact on our economy just when it's most vulnerable to the approaching fiscal cliff. business groups and state leaders are now calling on the president to intervene, warning that a strike could really cost the country billions of dollars. if history is any indication,
those warnings may be dead on. a lockout on the west coast back in 2002, remember that? lasted a total of ten days, and it cost the economy an estimated $1 billion each and every day. a strike at the ports of los angeles and long beach earlier this month lasted eight days, an estimated loss of $650 million a day. a republican strategist and a former campaign aide for president george w. bush, julie roginsky is former political adviser to new jersey senate frank lautenberg. good to see you both. >> good to see you. gregg: didi, smoot-holly was passed decades ago for the purpose of putting tariff limits on incoming products. do we need to reexplore that? >> yeah. this was, this was back in the
'60s. i mean, this was ancient history. why should these workers who get paid very well also get on top of that the booty of $15-$16,000 more. for what? this is just an extra fee and extra goodies per container. what this was back in the '60s was a way to help there be more workers, it was a deal done with the unions and the ports so they wouldn't use as much equipment and so they wouldn't be as efficient so they could keep their union workers. it's outdated, and it's wrong and, really, it's terrible -- gregg: julie, what do you think? >> i think if we're talking about smoot-holly which is a different issue just raised by didi, but, yeah, i think the president will probably intervene, and he did last time on the west coast and probably will again if this strike does play out. look, i am -- gregg: why wait? >> well, i think why wait, to see if the process can work -- gregg: what process? >> well, they're negotiating right now. there's no strike yet. gregg: please. >> let's see if today go on
strike -- gregg: you don't think they will? >> i don't know. i think it's from e mature to do anything before we see what happens. look, the strike effects other labor as well, the teamsters that drive the trucks off of those terminals not to mention the hundreds of thousands of people who make money and are employed by businesses that do work with the ports, so i absolutely agree with didi and you, this is a horrific situation, but i think we need to see how the process plays out first. if not, i do urge the president to think about using -- gregg: right. which dates back to the 1930s. >> correct. gregg: look, i think, didi, that there's a larger picture here, and it's unions, isn't it? >> yes. and unions are outdated. i mean, there was a time for them, but now all the unions are doing is holding these ports hostage which really the president does need to get involved. he's done so much for unions. look, he has definitely made his case, he has been there for the
folks that have been there for him, but this is different. this is over and above ruining businesses and commerce for our country, and it gets to the point where it's dangerous, and we really have to make sure ha these ports are open. and you know what i think these governors should do? they should start a strike force meaning that when these unions want to hold everyone hostage -- gregg: you're just angry because they killed hostess twinkies finish. >> you know what? you read my line. we don't have any good stuff, no junk food anymore. but the other thing is, truly, that the governor -- excuse me, these governors can come in and have a strike force and have these people take the jobs of the unions because a lot of people need jobs, and they would be very grateful -- gregg: julie, how do you overcome that argument? [laughter] >> you know, i don't know. that's a strong argument to make. >> julie was eating a twinkie last time i saw her. >> i believe you and i will still be eating twinkies and hohos despite that argument. i don't agree the governor --
are you appealing to governor chris christie of new jersey who is somebody who absolutely, you know, a republican -- gregg: don't start talking twinkies and the new jersey governor. >> no, no, that's not what i'm talking about. >> are you talking about twinkies and golf christie? -- governor christie? >> where i'm going, each state is very much affected, his state will be very much affected by a port strike. the port of new york/new jersey, he controls the port authority, are you appealing to somebody like governor christie, for example, to come in with a strike force against unions? >> yeah, actually, i am. absolutely. [inaudible conversations] gregg: great idea. >> when governor christie was just endorsed by the laborers' on union? >> it doesn't matter, julie. >> it's not going to happen for republicans or democrats. >> these unions are taking the ports hostage, and it's not right. that's not supposed to happen. remember, taft-hartley, the president should come in and intervene because it is not right for a union to be able to
control all the ports in our country -- gregg: why does it take 40 guys to unload one container? >> it doesn't. >> well, and i think that's part of the problem, gregg. gregg: that is the problem. >> i think part of the problem is a lot of these jobs have been reduced due to mechanics and robotics are able to do these jobs -- gregg: two guys actually unload the container, and then, you know, 38 other guys eat hohos and twinkies. >> have you ever seen these containers? i have. gregg: i have personally unloaded containers in my lifetime, a lot. >> well, then you know that some of these stevedores are required, but a lot -- gregg: yes. and i wasn't union either. all right. julie roginsky, didi, good to see you both. >> i see that twinkie you're about to eat, gregg. >> i see it. heather: which are you? >> i'm a twinkie guy. i like to stick in the straw -- heather: no, you do not. i don't believe it. gregg: i do. heather: as we count down the new year, we will take a look
back at some of the most talked-about scandals of 2012 including a big fall from grace for law enforcement. gregg: and trace is next with the remarble story of a little boy who touched lots of hearts after the connecticut school shooting. >> when i heard about sandy hook, i just felt really bad for all the kids who had died. >> i wasn't surprised that he wanted to do something, i was just surprised that he followed through with it, and it made me really proud. [ male announcer ] at scottrade, you won't just find us online, you'll also find us in person, with dedicated support teams at over 500 branches nationwide. so when you call or visit, you can ask for a name you know. because personal service starts with a real person. [ rodger ] at scottrade, seven dollar trades are just the start. our support teams are nearby, ready to help. it's no wonder so many investors are saying... [ all ] i'm with scottrade.
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♪ gregg: the world's longest high-speed rail line is now officially open. you're going to have to travel to get there, in china. it runs 186 miles from beijing in the north to an economic hub in the south. the trip takes about eight hours. before it took 20 hours to go the same distance. critics say it's too expensive. the cheapest price you're going to pay for a one-way ticket? $138 u.s. really? heather: that is fast though. gregg: that's more expensive than the veazona bridge. heather: is it? gregg: yeah. heather: well, you know, christmas the holiday -- gregg: i've heard about it. [laughter] heather: it's not all about giving or getting gifts, it is
about giving back as well. trace gallagher joins us with more on that. hi, trace. >> reporter: hey, heather. therethere are very little good happening in newtown, connecticut, these days, but a gift from a child made a huge difference. his name is 11-year-old cooper carlisle, he's from houston. and after the shooting he convinced his principal to allow his entire school to make cards for each of the 26 victims. and in those cards they filled them with prayers and poems and then cooper headed up to newtown to deliver those personally. and he shared part of one of the poems. listen. with such joy, they didn't know what to say. they remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day. where are we, asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse. this is heaven, declared a small boy, we're spending christmas at god's house. >> reporter: and, in fact,
that was a nice gesture from cooper carlisle. in california a man was putting chains on his car in the sierra nevada mountains, and his hands got cold, and his wed withing ring fell off, and -- wedding ring fell off, and he spent a long time going back and forth trying to find the rick in the snow. he couldn't find it, but the guy who was helping him put the chains on, he walked back and forth a couple of times, and he found it. the bad news is, the guy doesn't know who the guy is who owns the ring. all he knows is it says lisa inside, and there's a date. but if you lost your wedding ring, call the fox affiliate in sacramento, and they will help you find the owner and get you back together. for some less fortunate kids in texas, right? they love santa claus, but they love poncho claus. that is poncho claus, and he's been doing this down there in the southeast or the -- yeah, the southeast for 30 years? 30-plus years. he hands out gifts and all kinds of stuff to underprivileged
kids, and a lot of kids had a very nice christmas because of poncho claus. just three kind of nice, heart-warming stories for the holidays. stuff that you miss. gregg: i love the wedding ring story, trace. that was a really good one. heather: i have a feeling they'll track down who owns that ring. they'll be reunited with their wing. gregg: my wife's wedding ring is still missing, she lost it on our honeymoon. heather: really, and where was that? >> antigeorgia. gregg: it looks just like this. [laughter] and it's from tiffany's, so, um, and that was 20 years ago. heather: very nice. gregg: it's been missing 20 years. got plans for the new year? well, we hope it includes fox news' all-american new year's eve. it begins at 11 p.m. eastern on new year's eve with megyn kelly and bill hemmer. there they are, live from times square in new york city.
only they'll actually be moving and speaking and stuff like that. you can be part of the broadcast by texting your happy new year's message to the show. it's really simple to do, just type the letter u, text -- that's all one word -- leave a space, then type a brief message and send it to 36288. again, utext, space, your message to 36288 and then watch for your message on new year's eve. heather: and, hopefully, yeah, the weather will cooperate. gregg: i hope. heather: yeah. we have some snow flurries in new york city. gregg: look at the snow. it's not sticking though. heather: very windy. it seems to be blowing sideways behind you, gregg. gregg: not sticking at all. heather: going to need mittens and a scarf. as the clock winds down on the fiscal cliff, massive spend tax hikes for americans, we'll have an update on how things may change.
gregg: and speaking of the new year, we're looking back at the top scandals of 2012 in a must-see report. we're going to use the word tryst a lot. i love that word, tryst. heather: blues, that dead -- plus, that deadly winter storm that has created blizzard conditions across the nation's midsection, where it is headed next and what it means for millions of travelers heading home after the holidays. >> my mom and dad live in el paso, and i was planning on going to el paso, but i think i'll be staying home now. >> it was slick. i don't care to go back through it. i seen about a, oh, right at a dozen wrecks. one was overturned. just really bad. i don't advise going south. mine was earned off vietnam in 1968. over the south pacific in 1943. i got mine in iraq, 2003. usaa auto insurance is often handed down from generation to generation. because offers a superior level of protection,
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the adt new year's sale. it could help you save something more important than money. call now to save $300 on adt starting at $99 installed plus 15% off accessories. sale ends midnight january 2nd. heather: welcome back. a fox news weather alert for you now, all eyes on this, the radar, in a monster storm on the move making a mess for holiday travelers. now, these are live pictures from cleveland, ohio. wind combined with heavy snow bringing out near-whiteout conditions, and now parts of the northeast are bracing for the same treacherous weather. maria molina is live in the fox weather center. gregg and i were watching, and snow flurries are moving into new york city. >> reporter: that's right. a little bit of of snow, sleet mixing in, but most of it should be over by 4 or 5:00 p.m., so it
should mostly be just rainfall here for the evening rush. but that's the story across coastal areas, new york city also was we head across the coast of new jersey, but as you head a little further inland, those suburbs across areas north and west of the city are talking about snowfall accumulations anywhere between 3-6 inches, so it's a very fine line between what areas are looking at mostly rain and what areas are seeing that snowfall accumulate. superior sections of the northeast will easily get over a foot of snow for areas across pennsylvania, new york and even portions of new england. first, i want to show you where the storm system is right now because the center is currently moving through portions of tennessee and eastern kentucky. a very large storm system, areas that are currently dry in georgia and alabama are still experiencing impacts from the storm. right now with gusts over 20-30 miles per hour at times, so you could be seeing some delays at the airports. typically, you start seeing delays when gusts are over 40
miles per hour. we do have some showers, some storms and that possibility of severe weather still exists across eastern portions of the carolinas, north carolina and south carolina. still looking at a tornado watch in effect out there until about 5 p.m. eastern time. so, of course, when those tornado warnings get issued for your county, you've got to seek shelter right away either to a basement or away from windows in the most interior section of your home. on the western side of the storm system, we've had blizzard warnings from indiana and ohio, we still have those conditions, we can actually take a look at that video from cleveland. several inches of snow already on the ground, we're talking about easily over a foot in some areas of the city. you can see treacherous driving conditions, although cars do seem to be moving pretty quickly out there. again, just be safe on the roadways, not just in cleveland, but in indiana and also i cross interior sections of the northeast. we have mostly rain across eastern portions of kentucky, but as that colder air wraps around, you will likely see a
transition to some snow and a bit of a wintry mix. blizzard warnings still in effect across indiana and ohio. we're going to continue to see those conditions deteriorating especially into the overnight hours where we could be seeing gusts along coastal areas up to 60 miles per hour. still significant, 40-50 mile mile-per-hour winds. heather: it is dangerous. thank you, maria. and we are getting some harrowing figures as the storm continues moving north. as the associated press reports, some six people have died as a result of this dangerous weather across several states. more than 200,000 homes and businesses without power in arkansas alone with hundreds of flights canceled just today, and there are reports up and down the eastern seaboard and beyond. gregg? gregg: we are just five days away from the fiscal cliff deadline, and with massive tax hikes and spending cuts set to kick in january 1, a growing number of lawmakers are now saying they are skeptical about
reaching a deal at all. especially when the main sticking point remains whether to increase tax rates for top earners. so if washington cannot make a deal, what does it mean for you and i? ordinary taxpayers? molly henneberg is live in washington. >> reporter: hi, gregg, i have an answer for you, taxes will be going up for almost everyone if we go over the cliff, and it likely will take a toll on an already-stretched family budget. let's look at these numbers from the tax policy center. for those whose taxes do go up, this is the average tax hit families will take on top of what they already pay in taxes. below $10,000 they'll pay an average of about $300 more. look down the chart a bit. those who make between 40 and 50,000, they'll have to pay an extra $1700. looking at the next set of numbers for wage earners, $50-$75,000, they'll have to find an extra $2300 to send to washington, and if you managed to makeover $200,000, it will be
a big jump up, on average about $14,000 additional. and for the highest wage earners, here are those numbers. $500,000 to a million, they'll pay an average of $34,000 more. and over a million? the irs will want $216,000 additional dollars from you on top of what you already pay in taxes. so that's the individual picture. here's the bigger economic outleak. outlook. >> if, in fact, we do go over the fiscal cliff, it means the economy's going to go down pretty sharply. we're talking about $536 billion in tax increases, $110 billion in spending cuts at the federal level all hitting during january. so this would be a major economic contraction in the economy. >> reporter: possibly a major economic contraction at a time when americans will have less money to spend because of the tax hikes. gregg: and people already think they're wasting their money. all right. thanks very much.
heather: well, as 2012 winds down to a close, we're looking back at the big scandals that med headlines all around -- made headlines around the world with. arthel neville has more. >> infidelity, abuse, and tax dollars thrown out the door. 2012 had many surprising names caught smack in the middle. not even elmo or the head of the cia were immune. from tour de france to tour deshame, lance armstrong's name is tarnished over doping allegations that haunted him for much of his cycling career. he is stripped of all seven titles. hulk hogan gets his hands outside the ring. his sex tape going viral this year. elmo puppeteer kevin clash resigning after 28 years, accused of having sex with underage boys. >> 9 clash 9 clash 9. >> and 9/9/9 all but forgotten. herr maine cane -- herman cain
ending a presidential bid saying cheating rumors were ruining his marriage. arnold schwarzenegger with very public details on his cheating scandal. the 22-year-old kristin stewart admitting guessing too cozy with her director. john travolta has two male therapists file lawsuits against him claiming sexual assault. and the paparazzi getting, well, up close and personal with a topless sun-bathing kate middleton. >> what do you have to say about the verdict? >> 2012, one of the most infamous cases of sexual abuse. former penn state assistant coach jerry sandusky sentenced to at least 30 years behind bars for sexually abusing young boys. the late -- [inaudible] of the bbc accused of abusing girls he helped with his tv
show, and the secret service gone wild as a dozen agents are implicated for hiring prostitutes during a presidential trip to colombia. a difficult year for business leaders as well. >> we made a mistake, i'm absolutely responsible -- in the chief executive of barclays steps down after allegedly manipulating interest rates. and a yahoo ceo resigning for falsifying academic credentials. but what could be more scandalous than the world of politics? jesse jackson jr. goes mia for several months, it's later discovered he's receiving treatment for bipolar depression. federal authorities are looking into whether jackson jr. was skimming campaign funds to remodel his house. the congressman later resigned. a beleaguered gsa accused of wasting your tax dollars, this worker raps about how he dreams of being the commissioner and wasting the government's money on cash bonuses to his fellow bureaucrats. >> today's vote may make for
good political theater in the minds of some, but it is at base both a crass effort and a grave disservice to the american people. >> and for the first time in history, a sitting attorney general held in contempt by congress after refusing to release more documents into the botched operation fast and furious. the obama administration coming under even more scrutiny over a september 11th terror attack at the u.s. consulate in benghazi that killed a u.s.word and three -- u.s. ambassador and three other americans. u.s. ambassador susan rice first attributed it to a spontaneous uprising about an anti-muslim film. that turned out to be false, and now congressional leaders in both parties are demanding answers. and likely the most scandalous incident of the year throwing america's national security into crisis, former cia director david petraeus stepping down over an affair with his biographer, paula broadwell.
it's later revealed that the top u.s. general in afghanistan, john allen, is under investigation for inappropriate communication with socialite jill kelley. but the intermingling doesn't stop there. the fbi agent who began this entire investigation is himself accused of sending this picture to kelley. he later says it was e-mailed as a joke. yes, 2012 was the year falling for grace for many of these personalities, and in the digital world we all live in, the question for 2013 is not so much what the next scandal will be, but when will it hit and who's in the headlines. in new york, i'm arthel neville, fox news. gregg: you can always count on people to misbehave, right? heather: well, and the thing is how quickly we move from one to the next to the next to the next. gregg: lots of trysts. still love that word. all right, it was not-so-merry christmas for retailers. the holiday shopping season turned out to be a bit of a bust.
christmas. rachel davino's boyfriend was planning on proposing christmas've, but his dreams were shattered when the 29-year-old was gunned down. rachel was one of the 26 women and children killed on december 14th when a gunman opened fire inside sandy hook elementary school. twenty of the victims, children. ♪ gregg: new signs the economic recovery has actually stalled, the holiday shopping season turned out to be a bit of a bust for the retailers. 2012 saw the worst year-over-year performance since 2008. sales of electronics, clothing, jewelry rose less than a percentage point. wow. analysts expect growth of at least 3%. joining me now, the energy part cher of chapwood investments. does that slides you at all? -- surprise you at all? >> it really didn't. i mean, you could kind of smell
it, you could feel it in the economy. no one was excited about this holiday season. everyone felt as though they had very little clarity on where the future was economically, so it really didn't surprise me. plus, i walked around malls, around new york. you saw a lot of people, you didn't see a lot of bags, so i was not shocked by this. gregg: is 2012 the year of indecisiveness? >> yeah, that's exactly the way i would put it. going all the way through, at the beginning was obamacare going to be overturned, because we might see hiring pickup. remember, obamacare's a drain on the finances of a lot of companies, so people didn't make a lot of decisions until that supreme court decision came out. now there's questions about fiscal cliff, and as a result of that, everyone has basically inherent inertia. nobody wants to move forward, make decisions. it's a very tough economic environment. gregg: you know, out in the shopping malls it's really being felt, and we measure that, right, with shopper track? >> yes. and shopper track is down from
what they had forecast. they recently revised it lower, down about 25%. and, gregg, i think it's important to point out that stock prices on a lot of retailers and all companies, but especially redalers, moved -- retailers, moved up in anticipation of good sales. and as a result of the numbers not being very good, i think you're going to see the earnings estimates from analysts on wall street come down. so you might start to see that impact on the stock market as well. gregg: how much of this, ed, is fiscal cliff as opposed to just the aggregate of bad economic news? >> yeah. i don't think most people really understand the fiscal cliff. i think they're starting to get it just as molly had showed a couple minutes ago about how much more you're going to pay in taxes. i think it's a lot of confusion, and when people are confused, they really don't know what to do, and they don't see any silver lining out there, so they hold back. gregg, i'll give you an example. with my kids buying christmas gifts, it was more of a negotiation with them, what i could get away with spending,
what they wanted me to spend, and it wasn't, you know, that shows you a little bit about my household, right? [laughter] but that was the feeling i hadment i wasn't excited about buying gifts for my kids or wife, i was more or less saying i have to buy certain things, but i wasn't going overboard, and i think there are a lot of americans like that today. gregg: is there going to be a ripple effect from the bad holiday shopping season through the economy? >> yeah. and, again, you know, you always try to, you know, show a silver lining out there, and the silver lining is that stock prices based on expected earnings are cheap, but i think january, february and as we get into next year, we're going to see a really rough economy, and i would not with surprised -- be surprised if we saw our gdp growth really go sideways, maybe even lower at this point. there's nothing good happening, and until we start to see that, you're not going to see people spending. gregg: all right, ed, negotiating with your kids -- i hope you got something really nice for your wife, pal --
>> i'm still negotiating that one. gregg: it's a lifetime negotiation. trust me on that. ed, thanks very much. heather: now that's a cliff to talk about. gregg: oh, yeah. heather: we are tracking the latest on a winter storm, a monster storm that's moving into the northeast, and this could create quite a messy commute. we are live with the track coming up next. we know that this has already caused six deaths, it's reported, moving into new york city. gregg: and there it is right outside our studios. heather: windy and rainy. [ woman ] ring. ring. progresso. i just served my mother-in-law your chicken noodle soup but she loved it so much... i told her it was homemade. everyone tells a little white lie now and then. but now she wants my recipe [ clears his throat ] [ softly ] she's right behind me isn't she? [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup.
♪ gregg: well, today marks eight years since a tsunami devastated more than a dozen countries along the indian ocean. it began with an earthquake off the coast of i would news ya. -- indonesia. the quake triggering a massive tsunami that took many folks by surprise. this is a video from a ceremony in thailand this morning. in 2004 more than 230,000 were killed. indonesia, india, thailand, sari lanka the hardest hit. it was one of the deadliest natural disasters in recorded history. heather: well, there's a tiny town out west that has undergone a major transformation from a virtual ghost town to a booming,
high-tech town. anita vogel is live in los angeles with more on how they did this. >> reporter: this is truly a unique story about how one man stumbled across this virtual ghost town nearly 30 years ago and since then has managed to turn it into a high-tech oasis in the desert. harold freeman was prospecting for gold back in 1984 when he happened upon the tiny town of nipton, california. >> very much distressed. the hotel had been condemned by the county as a structure, and none of the buildings worked. >> reporter: the cal tech-trained geologist bought the town for $200,000 and has spent more than 25 years and $1 million to restore it, installing solar panels to power the whole town, e representing eco-cabins based on designs by
frank lloyd wright and setting up wi-fi for all the residents. and now this mojave town is experiencing a mini boom, getting visitor from all over. >> people from the u.k., from tokyo, from australia, france. i was amazed when i came to work here how many people from other countries come to visit our little town. >> reporter: and their little town's population has now blossomed to 60 residents as clean tech job seekers stream into the area to see the solar installations and more rare earth mining which is being expanded in the nearby hills. >> it's terrific for me because it's sort of like i'm realizing my dream of, and doing something i really like doing that is turning into a business success. >> reporter: and freeman says he also has plans for an organic farm, electric vehicle charging stations and, of course, more solar panels in the near future. and he also prides himself on
being only one of two people in the whole country to actually own a town. heather, back to you. heather: and that is quite a feat. thank you very much, anita, we appreciate it. gregg: good for him. heather: interesting. gregg: all right. one random act of kindness safing the day for a heartbroken little girl after a thief steals a beloved family pet right before christmas. the amazing story straight ahead. >> and that was the worst thing, that there was a grinch that was live and about and running around new york.
welcome back a little girl from washington heights in new york city getting her christmas wish answered by a good samaritan. someone stolemy i can't's dog out a grocery store on christmas eve. tina cohen saw a man trying to sell the king cavalier on the street and bought the dog then called police. >> i said that's not right. i said i would like to bite dog. i only have $100. he's like it's my friend's dog and he wants more money for this dog. >> hi! oh my god. >> thank you, because the people of washington heights and those great samaritans got that perpetrator who stole marley and now we get him on christmas day. >> that was the worst thing, there was a